Introduction Weight change in elderly is known as associated with risk of diseases and mortality.
Objective To examine the association between 2-year weight change and incidence of activities of daily living (ADL) disability in elderly women.
Methods Data comes from a longitudinal survey—SABE Study (Health, Well-being and Ageing), which began in 2000 with a multistage clustered sample of 2143 people aged ≥60 years-old living in Sao Paulo-Brazil. In 2006, during the second wave (n=1115 re-interviewed), used here as baseline, a subsample of 688 persons aged ≥75 years was followed-up, in 2 rounds (2008–2009). Measures included: Weight change (baseline- 2008); Incidence of ADL disability (baseline-2009). Logistic regression with ADL status in 2009 as outcome, including health and socioeconomic covariates. Inferences were weighted to account for sample design.
Results In 2006, from 433 women, 227 had no limitation in ADL. In 2009, ADL were analysed in a sample of 162 women. The disability incidence was 171.4/1000 person-years in women who lost more than 5% of weight, 138.4/1000 person-years in women who gained more than 5%, and 87.4/1000 person-years for women who maintained weight during follow-up. Weight loss was associated to the risk of disability (OR=3.38; p=0.012), as well as weight gain (OR=2.71; p=0.009). After adjusting for MMSE score, age, education and frailty, weight gain remained as independent factor associated to disability (OR=2.31; p=0.041), but weight loss lost significance (OR=1.91; p=0.288).
Conclusions Weight gain is associated with the risk of developing ADL limitation in older women.
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